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US Embassy Wellington

Dan Homsey - Neighborhood Empowerment Network (NEN). Visit to Christchurch & Wellington.

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Over the last three years Wellington Regional Emergency Management (WREMO - http://wellington.govt.nz/a... ) and the City and County of San Francisco have been work collaboratively on one of the most important goals of our time, how to empower communities to not only survive, but recover as well from all types of disasters. The working group, led by Dan Neely of WREMO and Daniel Homsey of San Francisco have made multiple trips to each other's cities as well as done site visits to Christchurch to capture the very latest in lessons learned to advance the development of a methodology that will work at the global level to mitigate a growing list of threats to our most vulnerable populations.

About the San Francisco's Neighborhood Empowerment Network:

6 years ago we set forth on crucial mission - to create a San Francisco where every resident lived in a resilient neighborhood that was a great place to live, work and raise a family regardless of the types of stress it would inevitably experience.

Inspired by the lessons of Hurricane Katrina, the ground breaking work of Prof. Aldrich and the technical support of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government's Acting in Time initiative, we set forth on creating the largest cross sector community resilience building initiative in our City's history. The Neighborhood Empowerment Network (NEN) and its Empowered Communities Program (ECP) has offered us a transformative opportunity to engage communities of diverse composition, socially and economically, and support them as they generate their own culturally competent Resilience Action Plans.

The ECP is somewhat disruptive because it does the following...

- Drives ownership for resilience, especially disaster resilience, to the neighborhood level;
- Repositions government as a "partner" as opposed to the traditional "service provider" role;
- Emphasizes that importance of creating healthy, vibrant communities today that are capable of bouncing back and worth fighting for tomorrow;
- Generates rich and diverse cross sector partnerships amongst the NEN's member organizations (government agencies, non profits, private sector, faith based & academic institutions, and foundations.);
- Offers other cities a model that can be deployed and successfully implemented anywhere

We've been honored to have received attention, and funding, from organizations such as the UN, CDC, and FEMA and are working aggressively to complete our toolkit so that we can give everyone the same detailed instructions on how to setup their own NEN and implement their own ECP.

Our largest initiative right now is a partnership with the SF Dept of Health as a result of a CDC grant we just received. In addition to providing the City's Bayview community with the technical support to draft their own Resilience Action Plan (RAP), we are also developing a resilience indicator system that uses open data so they can assess their condition in real time and make any necessary modifications in their RAP to address.

The NEN - http://empowersf.org/about-us/

The ECP - http://empowersf.org/ecp/

One of our program areas -- Resilient Bayview - http://empowersf.org/resili... Show less
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